Statement of Secretary Perfecto R. Yasay, Jr.*
AMERICA HAS FAILED US.
This is at the core of the message of PRRD to the American people and the world. This has also compelled him to realign our foreign policy towards an independent track in pursuing the overriding national interest and in upholding and protecting our sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Breaking away from the shackling dependency of the Philippines to effectively address both internal and external security threats has become imperative in putting an end to our nation's subservience to United States' interests.
It has been 70 years ago since America acknowledged the hard fought independence of its only colony in Asia after it arrogated our victory in the struggle for freedom from 400 years of Spanish domination. And yet, after proclaiming in July 4, 1946 that the Filipinos had been adequately trained for self determination and governance, the United States held on to invisible chains that reined us in towards dependency and submission as little brown brothers not capable of true independence and freedom.
Yes, there are many significant countless things that we will be forever grateful to America for. But the stark reality is that even in protecting our territorial boundaries and the exclusive use of our maritime entitlements in the South China Sea, our defensive forces remain grossly incapable in meeting the security threats that we face from potential foes, not to mention their stagnating impact on our development. Worse is that our only ally could not give us the assurance that in taking a hard line towards the enforcement of our sovereignty rights under international law, it will promptly come to our defense under our existing military treaty and agreements.
The "carrot and stick" policy of the U.S. towards the Philippines has been effectively used all through the long years since our independence to force Filipinos into submission to American demands and interests.
This is what PRRD is now trying to liberate us from.
Yes, we have serious concerns and challenges with the Chinese as we try to engage them in bilateral talks towards peacefully settling our disputes in accordance with the legal and diplomatic process under international law. Our past mistakes in fostering and strengthening our friendship with our white big brother will be instructive for this purpose.
We will never allow China or any other nation to bully us or deal with Philippine interests under another carrot and stick policy.
But for now the urgent message of PRRD in realigning our independent foreign policy is about the state of our relationship with America and traditional partners. It is principally addressed to American leaders and policy shapers. Are they willing to change their tack in dealing with us to be in sync with geopolitical realities? Does it value our special friendship to save and strengthen it?
Or would it instead choose to ignore our urgent pleas and interject alleged human rights violations and concerns as we address our pressing domestic problems based on our urgent needs and priorities to get what they want? END
* as posted in his personal Facebook page